Millions of people around the world suffer from dry eyes. This condition happens when the eyes do not produce enough tears or the tears produced are of poor quality. Left untreated, it can be uncomfortable and lead to other eye issues.
The excessive evaporation of tears can result in dry eyes. Factors like prolonged exposure to air conditioning, wind, and heat can cause excessive tear evaporation. Also, dry environments can raise your risk of developing dry eyes.
Tear production naturally declines as you age, resulting in dry eyes. There are several causes for this. These include hormonal changes, illnesses, and medications.
People who spend much time using computers or other digital devices may experience dry eye. Blinking less frequently while staring at a digital screen can cause tears to evaporate more quickly, causing dry eye.
Sjogren's syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, and lupus are a few illnesses that can harm the tear glands and result in dry eyes. The conditions can damage the tear glands, making them produce fewer tears.
Tear production can decrease due to certain drugs, including antihistamines, decongestants, and antidepressants. Consult your doctor if you are taking any of these medications and notice dry eye symptoms.
It can be challenging to see clearly due to blurred vision caused by dry eye.
These symptoms can feel like a burning or scratchy sensation in the eyes. The discomfort can range in intensity from mild to severe. It may come with a feeling of a foreign body in the eye.
Another side effect of dry eye is eye redness and swelling. This might be due to irritation and inflammation.
Due to the eyes' increased sensitivity to glare caused by the lack of tears, those with dry eyes may experience light sensitivity. That can make driving incredibly challenging, especially at night. It can also make your eyes tired and strained.
It is interesting to note that dry eye can lead to excessive tearing. This happens when the eyes try to compensate for the lack of natural tears. Overstimulated tear ducts will overproduce tears. The extra tears evaporate quickly, making the eyes dry and irritated. This can start a cycle of dry eyes.
The underlying cause and the degree of the symptoms will determine the best treatment for dry eye. Simple remedies for mild cases of dry eye include:
Using artificial tears
Taking breaks from electronic devices
Avoiding dry environments
Prescription eye drops
To preserve your natural tears, your eye doctor at Advanced Vision Care might advise installing a humidifier in your home or using specialized tools like tear duct plugs or punctal occlusion. Punctal occlusion involves closing the tear ducts to keep tears from evaporating too quickly and prolonging their time in the eyes.
Although it can be annoying and uncomfortable, dry eye is treatable. You can take action to relieve the symptoms and maintain your eye health by being aware of the causes and symptoms. Schedule an appointment with your eye doctor if you are experiencing dry eye symptoms. You can have comfortable and healthy eyes with the proper care.
For more about dry eye syndrome, visit Advanced Vision Care in DeSoto, Fort Worth, or Mansfield, Texas. Call (972) 223-5354, (817) 370-2100, or (817) 631-1900 to schedule an appointment today.